When cutting fiberglass and other composites the “go-to” choice is the tried and true electro-plated diamond cutoff wheel. You would be hard-pressed to find a composite cutting operation without one.
This is the most popular blade model for general purpose cutting. It’s used for standard, thin FRP applications and generally achieves a nice, clean cut.
When a continuous rim blade may not be optimal:
While the continuous rim model is great for straight cuts, it’s generally not recommended for radius/curved cuts. Slight curves may be achieved, but otherwise, there are better choices. (See Side-Spoked Blade).
If the material being cut is ¾” and thicker, the continuous rim is generally not recommended. (See Gulleted/Slotted Blade).
If dust build-up is an issue in your application, we recommend gulleted/slotted blades instead of continuous rim.
The side-spoked blade is highly recommended for radius cuts. The diamond spokes help keep the blade from jamming.
Side-spoked blades make good straight cuts as well.
When your material is ¾” and thicker, it’s time to break out the gulleted/slotted blade.
However, there’s the risk of an occasional nick on the edge of the trimmed part. This isn’t usually a problem unless you’re trimming a gel-coated or acrylic-faced part where a smooth cut is necessary.
Diatrim developed the SuperSpeed models for customers requesting larger diamond surfaces on their blades. The SuperSpeed I blade was designed to include the benefits of both the side-spoke and gulleted/slotted blades.
The SuperSpeed II blade has all the benefits of the SuperSpeed I, but the large diamond surface also allows the operator to quickly turn the blade sideways to grind and sand parts without wasting time changing tools.
These are general guidelines for choosing the right blade based on both our experience and feedback from customers over the past 35 years. But ultimately the operator will decide on the best blade for the specific application, sometimes through a trial of different blades.
If you have any questions, we’re happy to help.
For additional factors in choosing the right blade see Choosing the Right Blade – Thickness & Diamond Grit